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A Deep Dive into Collagen for Joints

A Deep Dive into Collagen for Joints
This article has been independently verified for accuracy by Dr Harshi Dhingra MD.


As time goes on, wear and tear of our joints is inevitable. In fact, some experts believe that everyone will experience some form of osteoarthritis (the “wear and tear” form of arthritis) as they age. However, you aren’t sentenced to joint pain for life. In fact, there are many ways you can take care of your joints and live an agile and vibrant life—even in your golden years.

Taking collagen for joints and joint-related aches and pains is one of the best things you can do. So, is there any science behind this? How should you take collagen for your joints? And how exactly does collagen benefit joint health? In this article, we dig deeper into taking collagen for joints and everything you should know.

Is Collagen Worth Taking For Joints?

Collagen supplementation isn’t just about superficial beauty and anti-aging factors. In fact, collagen has many uses throughout the body. As the most abundant protein in the human body, collagen helps:

  • Enhance skin elasticity and hydration
  • Improve hair and nail health
  • Increase muscle mass
  • Prevents bone loss
  • Improve gut health and gut wall integrity

And yes, it may help improve joint aches and pains!

Even a research study back from 2008 shows the effectiveness of collagen supplements when it comes to improving activity-related joint pain (In other words, it’s not just for older individuals). Yet, we know as we age, collagen becomes less abundant in the body, and this is partially why we become more susceptible to problems like arthritis, injuries, and achy joints. 

So, how does collagen help improve joint health and reduce pain?

A joint is technically any place in the body where two bones meet. And often, this is where movement takes place. It’s why we can bend our elbows and knees or move our legs away from our bodies. Combined with our muscle and tendon strength, the body is able to generate tons of force thanks to our joints! 

But this also means that our joints take on considerable pressure throughout our lifetimes. At the end of each bone at a joint, there is protective articular cartilage, which is made up of collagen. 

At a healthy joint, this cartilage allows bones to move smoothly against one another as we perform certain movements. Yet, over time and with repetitive activity, this cartilage can deteriorate. If there isn’t enough collagen to help replenish and repair this cartilage, pain frequently occurs. 

Research shows that collagen can actually help improve joint pain, a common symptom of osteoarthritis. Collagen likely does this in a few ways.

First off, collagen contributes to the restoration and repair of the articular cartilage at the joints. Taking collagen supplementation gives the body the supplies it needs to do so. On top of this, collagen contributes to healthy bones, tendons, and muscles. These structures support our joints, which can alleviate pressure and pain. 

While it is worth noting that collagen alone might not be the be-all and end-all to your joint woes, it’s definitely worth incorporating as part of your joint management strategy. More on how you can improve your joint health below! But first, let’s briefly take a closer look at the best collagen for joints and how long it may take for collagen to work its magic on your joints.

What Type of Collagen Is Best for Joints?

Type II or III Collagen for Joint Pain?

Are you wondering whether type I or type II collagen for joints is best? Don’t worry; We’ve got you covered.

There are actually 16 different types of collagen, but the most common types found in the body are types I, II, and III. Type I primarily makes up the skin, bones, and tendons, and type III is found in the muscles,skin, blood vessel walls and internal organs. Type II is the collagen found in the cartilage of our joints.

Type II collagen is the best collagen for joints, providing strength and elasticity. Thus, when looking for a collagen supplement, you’ll want to ensure it incorporates type II for optimal joint benefits.

How Long Does It Take For Collagen to Help Joints?

The general rule of thumb with collagen is that it takes about three to six months to notice any changes in your joints, skin, or any other issues. This means you want to take 2.5 to 15 grams per day. Taking collagen in powder form, such as So Body Co’s Collagen, makes it ultra-easy to get in since you can add it to smoothies, sauces, coffees, juices, and more!

What Else Can You Do For Your Joints?

Again, collagen for joints isn’t the end of the line when it comes to taking care of any aches or pains. There’s a few more things you should keep in mind.

1. Stay Active

Stay Active Walks

Moving your body can help reduce pain and stiffness that occur at the joints. Having a regular workout routine can also boost muscle mass, helping support your joints in the best way possible. In fact, regular strength training (combined with getting adequate protein) is one of the best ways to build muscle.

On top of this, daily walks can help improve bone health, preventing issues like osteoporosis. Walking further offers a low-impact way to stay in shape that won’t wreck your joints!

2. Maintain a Healthy Weight

Excess weight can place additional and unnecessary pressure on your joints. In fact, being overweight or obese is a major risk factor for the development of osteoarthritis. Furthermore, for every additional pound you carry on your body, this can place four more pounds of stress on your joints. Thus, maintaining or achieving a healthy weight is essential for joint health.

On top of this, it will also help reduce your risk of life-threatening diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and more.

3. Prioritise Sleep

According to the Arthritis Foundation, a lack of quality sleep can actually worsen your joint pain. Sleep deprivation further reduces your body’s ability to restore and repair, as well as can snowball and increase your risk of various diseases.

Every adult should aim to get seven to nine hours of quality sleep per night. To do so, make sure to avoid screen use for one to two hours before bed and to develop a wind-down routine, such as reading a book or taking a warm bubble bath to relax and ease into sleep.

4. Quit Smoking

Smoking actually increases your risk of developing joint pain and certain bone conditions. On top of this, it can lead to lung cancer and other health issues. Aim to quit smoking. If you’re not sure how, discuss your options with your doctor. 

5. Don’t Forget About Your Overall Diet

Maintaining Healthy Diet

Collagen for joints isn’t the only nutrient you should consider adding to your diet. Optimal joint health further relies on sufficient omega-3s, calcium, vitamin D, vitamin C, and more. Eating a whole foods diet and choosing whole foods (such as fruits and veggies) instead of over processed or pre-packaged food items can help ensure you meet these quotas and don’t experience joint pain due to any nutritional deficiencies.

At the same time, collagen is a supplement almost everyone should add to their diet. Unlike our ancestors, who primarily ate and used the whole animal, we simply don’t obtain enough collagen in the typical modern diet today. Thus, adding a scoop of collagen to your coffee or morning smoothie is definitely worthwhile. And remember, collagen isn’t just about your joints! It also has various other functions in the body, taking your overall health and wellness to the next level.

Hazel Walker
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